Tuesday, June 10, 2014

3 Things I've Learned Since Leaving My Job In The Fitness Industry

Hey loveys,

This post has been a while coming. If you've been following the blog for a while, you know I used to work in the fitness industry, and I worked in the fitness industry for almost 10 years. When you're actually working in the fitness industry, that usually means you either work IN a gym, or you work VERY close to a gym. That was my life since I started my first co-op at the local gym in my hometown at age 16.

When you're in the fitness industry, it's a bit.... how shall I say this.... different, I guess, than living in the "real world" (per se). When in the fitness industry, your surrounded by all of this positivity and greatness and constant excitement by people who are passionate about making the world a healthier place, while they spend their days in a facility dedicated to physical fitness, and where it is firmly believed that "I don't have time to workout" is a mere excuse that people who aren't SUPER in love with fitness make.

In my last job, I worked in an office in the bottom of a gym. During my lunch break I would run upstairs and workout for a good 50 minutes every day and just eat my lunch at my desk afterwards. I never really thought anything of it because it's what I had been doing my whole life. My job prior was in a gym, and prior to that was at the company's home office and the gym was directly across the street. Basically working out during the day was just a part of my life and I didn't know any differently.

In December of last year I left my job and the fitness industry in general (in a professional sense) and I've learned SO MUCH from being on the outside of fitness. First things first - I LITERALLY have very little time to workout during the week. If I didn't have a gym in my condo building, I would probably see the inside of a gym maybe once or twice a week over the weekend. When I have to wake up at 5:30am, be in class from 8am to 3pm and start work at 3:30pm and get home around 11pm, that literally leaves me no time to workout and that schedule is a typical Monday and Wednesday for me. If I'm feeling good I will wake up at 5am and get in a small workout before my day begins, but it's extremely hard. For me, this is not an excuse because you all know I love my workouts. It's just a reality and I feel like people who work IN a gym and not away from a gym may not understand the reality of that. Not that they should if they don't know any differently... I'm just sharing what I've learned, I'm not pointing fingers (so no hateful comments below, k? Thanks.).

Another thing I've learned is that it's extremely hard to keep yourself motivated when NO ONE around you cares about fitness or nutrition. I'm so serious right now.... There is literally no one I hang out with at school that care about working out, and actually, one girl thinks it's extremely unfeminine to be muscular. I verbally disagreed with her, but to each their own, right? I work with A LOT of really amazing people, however the restaurant industry isn't the healthiest... especially when there is freshly baked bread and freshly baked biscotti to nibble on throughout the night. I can easily tell I've put on weight since working in a food facility, but the food is SO GOOD I can't resist it. So that's an issue. Anyways, back on track... there are a couple of girls that are into working out, but I don't work directly with them nor do I work with them every time I work. Working in the fitness industry was amazing for staying motivated. People constantly set personal goals, or want to accomplish a certain goal as a team, there was always something to work towards physically which always kept motivation high.

Basically, all in all I've quickly learned that I am responsible for my own motivation. Seriously. This is a lot harder now than I ever thought it would be. Normally eating healthy and being active was just a regular thing... but now I'm in a world where eating chips and hot dogs and drinking wine every single day is a normal thing. I fell quickly into the trap of chips and wine and stuff and QUICKLY saw my body change so I QUICKLY ended that. Lol! But yes, I'm a big girl now and I have to learn that I don't need people to tell me to eat salad over fries or just just get my ass to the gym instead of watching season 2 of Orange Is The New Black (PS - anyone watching this?? LOVE. Who's your favourite character?), I shouldn't have that hot dog on the way home from work after not eating for 8 hours, I should get a wrap, or a salad instead. These are not hard decisions, I've just been making the LAZY decision.

Sigh. There's my rant for the day. To all of you people out there whom I ever told "not having time" was just an excuse, I understand now and I apologize. For all of you fitness people who are cringing at this post and screaming "IT IS AN EXCUSE!", well, sure.. I guess it is, I guess I could workout between 11pm and 12am or continue sleeping less than 6 hours so I can wake up to workout. Obviously I absolutely will do that sometimes (like I've been doing)... but when I don't (or when others don't), it's not because we are lazy (that's a lie, some of us will use that excuse solely to be lazy), it's literally because the world is such a demanding place this day and age, we literally don't have time.

On that note, I did get a good upper body workout in today and I did eat well today (omg I ate some roasted chick peas and I feel like my stomach is about to explooooooode) so I might just allow myself a glass of red wine tonight. :)


  1. Stick with it! I was in fitness, then out of it and now I've been back in it for 8 years. When I was in F&B, I was managing a bar and it made the schedule tough. It was hard to motivated, too, since a lot of the people I worked with were big drinkers, smokers and not concerned about being very healthy. Hopefully blogging can help you stay motivated and you'll get support from your fellow bloggers!

  2. I AM in the fitness industry and would never say it's an excuse. Your schedule laid out above sounds exhausting. And you are so self-aware and motivated, that I imagine you'll be back to the gym when your school days ease up. In the meantime, pass the bread. You can keep the biscotti.

  3. Welcome to the real world! :-) Seriously, you make some really good points. As an attorney, I could always spend more hours sitting at my computer and they pry us away from our desks to attend meetings by luring us with food. It does take constant resolve to stay motivated, but that's reason I love the healthy living blogging community.

  4. Great post, Sarah! I can totally relate

  5. seriously this is a great reminder for trainers!!! It's way too easy to assume everyone has time and is making excuses. Though I think there are ways to make it work in the schedule it's not as easy as being there all the time.

  6. I love this post! I read lots of blogs and such and see people who work at gyms or are personal trainers and think no wonder why they can work out everyday or twice a day or eat super healthy all the time. It makes it a lot easier than when you work 9-5 and have to drive to the gym and such. Thanks for being honest and know that you can find balance. Some weeks I do better than others but just try to stay consistent and get into a schedule where at least you know 3 times a week you'll get to the gym or only buy lunch one day a week, etc.

  7. Thanks for this post! I'm a personal trainer and worked in consulting prior. I totally understand what it's like to have a demanding job with long hours. Sometimes it's much better for your sanity to come home, have a glass of wine and watch Netflix.

    I do think a lot of people could make time if they really wanted to make it happen, but it's not always a priority. All we can do is the best with what we're given.

  8. I appreciate this wonderfully honest post. I find that I have to *make* time to keep things in check for myself too or things just get away from me.


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